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Lame

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    Lame

    For my fellow bread bakers, you probably know how important it is to slash the crust of your bread before putting it in the oven. Sharp knives are OK but a French lame is far superior. However, a Lame is about $10 if you buy it from a kitchen supply. FAR easier to make one, yourself. Start with an ordinary razor blade. the ones you buy to go into the razors that you open by twisting the handle. the guys probably know what I'm talking about. Anyway, once you have your blades, go to anyplace that sells dowel rods. buy one small enough to go through the holes in the blade.

    Cut the dowel rod down so you have 8-10" of stick. if you can find them slender enough, a skewer will do. Then, bend the razor into a curve and reinsert the dowel back through the other hole on the same side of the blade. The final shape is a shallow "D" with the blade forming the curved part of the letter. you can make 3'4 'handles' with one dowel rod. HWMO tells me the razor blades were $8 for a pack of 10 blades. so, altogether, I have less than a dollar invested and it works perfectly.

    Then comes the question, how do we store it so we don't slash our hands when we reach for it in the cabinet. HWMO came up with the PERFECT answer! He took an old prescription bottle from the pharmacy, drilled a hole in the center of the lid and, VIOLA! We put the blade in the bottle and run the handle through the hole drilled in the lid and the razor is safely put away. of course, when using it, you still have to be careful so you don't slice your finger. Like I did, this morning. Blood doesn't count as a spice!

    #2
    Karon... Saving money is always good. Save more money by not buying a dowel. You can get long stir sticks for free.
    https://flic.kr/p/fbvx7X

    Comment


    • Karon Adams
      Karon Adams commented
      Editing a comment
      If I had one, but we don't. So I had him grab a dowel. it was, I think 75 cents

    • Breadhead
      Breadhead commented
      Editing a comment
      .75 cents is cheaper than buying an over priced lame for sure. Learning to dock/score my bread properly to get nice ear's was very difficult for me. The angle of your lame makes a big difference. It took me along time to get that right.

    #3
    I just use a bamboo skewer to hold my double edge razor blade. I use a small piece of card stock or cardboard as a sheath. Fold it over the blade, then a little tape, and that's it.

    Comment


      #4
      I really know nothing about baking, I'm curious, why you need to gouge out parts of the crust? What happens if you don't?

      Comment


      • Strat50
        Strat50 commented
        Editing a comment
        It can crack to the point of the loaf of bread is almost impossible to cut right.

      • Breadhead
        Breadhead commented
        Editing a comment
        Bread has has a lot of water in the ingredients. My sourdough recipe is 70% hydration. That means I weigh the flour used and add 70% of that weight in water. 600 grams of flour and 420 grams of water. When I bake the loaf at 500 degrees the steam created inside the dough is going to come out somewhere. All sourdough bread you buy is docked/scored with a Lame, a razor blade, before it goes into the oven. The baker is telling the steam where he wants that steam to come out of the interior of the loaf. If you didn't dock it the pressure generated by the steam will find the weakest point in your boule or batard and blow it open. Good docking is an art form and many baker's take great pride in how the docking and a strong ovenspring makes their loaf look spectacular.
        Last edited by Breadhead; March 11, 2015, 08:50 PM.

      • Karon Adams
        Karon Adams commented
        Editing a comment
        adding to the other comments, you aren't actually 'gouging out' anything. you are just cutting through the top layer of the bread. this cuts the outer crust that forms during the proof. it will cook first and has already begun the cook @dry phase by the time it is proofed and ready to go in the oven. when it does that, it draws a lot of tension because the bread inside is expanding because the yeast is growing and creating more steam, pushing upward. if you slash the bread, the steam will escape where you want it to escape and the entire loaf will have rom to make the initial rise in the oven called 'oven spring'. Without slashing and creating a place where the bread can expand and relieve some of that pressure, the bread will split wherever the least amount of strength is found on the dough and will break through at that point. generally not a good place for looks or symmetrical cooking.

      #5
      Gouging sounds very violent LOL. It's just slight slashes that most folks think it is for looks.

      Comment


        #6
        HWMO means...?

        Comment


        • Huskee
          Huskee commented
          Editing a comment
          He Who Must Obey (husband). It's a riff on SWMBO (she who must be obeyed).

        • Karon Adams
          Karon Adams commented
          Editing a comment
          Thank you, Huskee.

        • Huskee
          Huskee commented
          Editing a comment
          You're welcome Karon Adams Although I must say, shouldn't obedience be mutual in a marriage? Lol.

        #7
        you could NOT be more wrong. but, then again, you are afflicted with a "Y" chromosome. Those of us with perfectly matched chromosomes tend to be a forgiving lot. but, he obeys because he knows, quite literally, where his bread is buttered 😊

        Comment


        • Huskee
          Huskee commented
          Editing a comment
          Lol. Remind me not to get you going

        • Breadhead
          Breadhead commented
          Editing a comment
          Women are from Mars... That must be why NASA is so interested in getting men to Mars. Maybe they can figure them out? Us earthling's have no chance of ever doing that.😁

        #8
        Do you know what Serving Humans is?

        Comment


        • Breadhead
          Breadhead commented
          Editing a comment
          Illegal...!

        • David Parrish
          David Parrish commented
          Editing a comment
          Soylent Green joke? I'm guessing cause I dunno.

        #9
        Or apparently it's episode 89 of The Twilight Zone... Or a hotel in Nigeria...

        Comment

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